Friday, July 10, 2009

Ghostly lodging

For those who like a slightly different vacation, there are plenty of places out there, from bed and breakfasts to castle hotels, that offer a ghost (or ghosts) along with the regular amenities. Tea and coffee maker, complimentary bottle of wine, chocolates, hot tub, full breakfast, ghostly activity free of charge.

Lodging owners in the United States and Great Britain are eager to let potential clients know about the ghosts they have. The Travel Channel spotlights various haunted locations across the States, and a few in Britain, dramatizing the stories behind the hauntings. (Not all the hauntings shown on the Travel Channel concern places that are now used for lodging, however.)

Think of it as a different kind of adrenaline sport. Most sports people like to collapse in bed at the end of the day, pleasantly exhausted. Ghost tourists know that they aren't likely to get a good night's sleep... and they're prepared for it. Sometimes the activity is just a feeling that they aren't alone in the room. Sometimes spirits manifest themselves. It can be the apparition of a young child, an anxious mother, a wounded soldier. Sometimes the ghost, or ghosts, won't want anyone in that particular room; sometimes the guest(s) will return to find the sheets rumpled, or their clothing scattered around the room, or something missing. Lights may turn off and on; doors may open and close with no one near them.

Some of these places ask their guests to write down their experiences, if any. Not all guests will encounter paranormal activity; those who do will not always experience the same thing.

Anyone out there who would like me to blog about their haunted bed and breakfast/guest house/hotel/other lodging is more than welcome to contact me here!

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